Saturday, September 28, 2013

Berserk Box and Crafting!

It's a new month and new content!

Sabretooth was released in a "Beserker Box" this week. It's basically like all the other boxes that have come out so far. Don't worry, though. At some point they'll probably just put the villains in the store like everyone else. At least I hope so.

It was my first time in the game for a few months. I'm glad the SHSO team has fixed the bug with the downloader. Everything is running relatively smoothly now.

I logged into the game to try out "crafting", something that's often found in other MMO games. Honestly this was the last thing In expected them to do in Super Hero Squad Online, so I checked it out to see how it was.

So basically you collect these crafting parts and use them to craft one of the things in the list on the right. Of course, you can either run around the zones like crazy for hours, using all your heroes to collect various items, or just pay them money to buy parts with gold.

It's a fun diversion that'll make searching for fractals more fun, for sure. However, I don't advise spending any gold on these since they seem to be things you can buy in the store already, except for much cheaper. I'm glad they added this though, because now you have a bit of a bonus while combing the zones.

It also seems like there's a leaderboard set up for the new mission. I wonder what the prize is?


Anyway, so yeah, once again I'm sorry for not getting news to you on time or on a regular basis. Even the best games get a little tiring after all, and while I love this one, and would recommend it to anyone who wants to get to know Marvel's wonderful universe more, I'm just too busy to properly report on it anymore. I'm not quitting this blog altogether, basically I'm just pointing out what's already happening, which is that I'm going to be posting very sparingly. I'll keep the blog up so new readers can discover cool posts like the What-Ifs, my how to get gold guide, and my top ten lists. And I'm definitely going to post the Transformers What-If Bonus at some point. But for the most part, the blog is winding down. :(

I'll keep responding to comments though, so leave yours below!
-- SHSOFan.

Friday, August 30, 2013

Yup, It's Archangel!

Well, sometimes over-analyzing pays off, and I'm pleased to say my number one prediction for who the teased hero was was indeed correct. So, awesome! Kind of sad that it wasn't Darkwing, but hey, it's not that bad. I wonder how he plays. Does he have the same healing factor as regular Angel? Does he have that awesome flight double jump? Guess I'll have to look it up online, since once again my SHSO account had to file for bankruptcy. Guess I'll just try to gather as much gold as I can, but first, is he worth the effort? If you have Archangel, tell me in the comments how he is! Is he fun to play as, or should I pass and wait for another X-Men release in this month of X-Men?
Also, whoa they released Rescue and Avengers Iron Man as Sidekicks! I wonder when they're going to release actual sidekick characters as sidekicks. Rescue's on the right path but Iron Man is by no means a sidekick. How about Bucky Barnes or Iron Patriot or War Machine? Even Wasp would be more appropriate! Anyway, sorry for the little rant there. What do you think? Post in the comments!

-- SHSOFan.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Who Could It Be?

SHSO released a teaser on their Facebook page today that had many fans guessing the character with little to no luck. Who is this? I'll go over the top guesses and see which is the most likely.

3. Darkhawk

Out of all the guesses, this is the one I'd most like it to be. However, the wings are slightly segmented, and I would expect that'd show in the teaser image. But you never know! The release date would be pretty odd though, as it wouldn't coincide with anything else they've said.

2. Falcon

Not a bad guess, but personally I don't think this is likely. They are much more likely to give us a movie tie-in when the movie comes out, and it's much too early to do that.

Let's look at that photo again.

The figure is quite obviously holding it's wings in front of itself, (probably to fit the figure in the image for the teaser).

1. Archangel

Archangel just makes sense. Recently, an X-Men month was teased, and his wings do sort of fit the wings in the picture. However, I'm hesitant to just write this one off, because Archangel's wings, at least in this picture, are much longer, and SHSO tends to be extremely faithful in refitting designs.

So, if it isn't Archangel, who is it?

Uh, ever heard of Condor?

Well, that wraps up this theory post! Who do YOU think it is?
I'm pretty sure it isn't Dark Phoenix, since her wings are made out of flames and therefore would be hard to hold.

See you in the game!
-- SHSOFan.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

X-Men Month Teased!

In a recent email, SHSO teased an upcoming "X-Men Extravaganza", and they're kicking it off with an X-Men sale! Magneto, Astonishing Cyclopes, Psylocke, Emma Frost and Nightcrawler are all included in the sale. I currently own Astonishing Cyclopes, Nightcrawler and Psylocke, and if you don't own any, I recommend Nightcrawler. His exploration style is unique, and he fights quickly. Since I believe Emma was taken away from the store a while back, now might also be a good time to get her. :)

So, which X-Men do you think will show up in the coming X-Men month? My bets are on Jubilee for sure, though I'm also secretly hoping for more obscure characters like Surge, Dust or Forge.

-- SHSOFan.

Friday, August 9, 2013

You Can Keep Your Agents-Only Heroes!

Finally a release worth talking about! After about a month of gimmicky Mystery Boxes and Caption Contests we get to finally play as characters that we spent our hard-earned gold on.
About time, I say! Can't wait to blast off as Iron Man MKI again!

In other recent news, yes, Thanos was released, and yes, it's another Mystery Box, this time cleverly referred to as an "Infinity Box". No news so far if there'll be a mission, but it sure would be fun to play as movie Loki and battle Thanos, (hint hint).

They also give a 10% increase to XP if you purchase gold. Well, I guess I'm eligible so seems like I'll be getting more XP when I log in again. The reason I haven't been in the game is because my computer is really, really, old. Also, all the friends I used to play with don't play anymore, so it's hard to find motivation. However, I'll still be here to finish up my What-If series properly with those two bonuses I've been teasing, as well as to give my opinions on newly released content of interest.

-- SHSOFan.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Transformers What-If: Behind the Scenes

Hmm, where to begin with this one? First of all I'd always wanted to see what the Transformers would look like SHSO-fied, especially movie Optimus because he's so complicated.
I've been a Transformers fan for a really long time, so I'm familiar with the characters and I felt I could create an alternate game pretty easily. In the end, this project took a few weeks to finish, which is an awful lot of work.

So, first I'll talk about the character models.

Movie Optimus
Movie Optimus took me a whole day to model and I created every texture from scratch just for him. I got a few reference photos of the real movie Optimus and scaled it to SHSO sizing, copying almost every part of him, and simplifying it. He even has a tiny Autobot logo on his chest!

I needed more then one hero to play as, so I also modeled G1 Optimus! I used fan art from around the internet as reference, and faithfully duplicated him to a tee. I cheated a bit though by reusing the same texture for the pipes as I did for movie Optimus, and reusing his hands.

Shockwave's model was based on the War of Cybertron videogames. I copied Shockwave's chest texture almost exactly. I reused Optimus's hands again, even though Shockwave usually has claw-like hands, because I was originally not going to show a mission picture and so I only needed to show him from the waist-up.

For the car forms I tried to reuse as many parts from the robot models as possible to sell the idea that they turned into the cars. G1 Optimus actually comes closest to transforming, but I had to remodel a lot to get movie Optimus to fit into his truck form. The end result was worth it though, since he really does look like a mini movie Optimus truck!

In order to create each screen, I carefully copied from SHSO screenshots and relied on gradients and overlaid textures to complete the final image. Shanix is the main currency that the Transformers use, and Galactic Credits are like the equivalent of silver. I didn't know what either looked like, so I made shanix look like sticks of gold and silver and credits like silver coins but with the Decepticon Cybertronian letter for "E" on them. Notice how the hand you use as a mouse pointer in the game is Optimus's.

To make the "Courage" booster pack, I took an image of Optimus and used Corel Painter X's Sketch filter. Then I made another image of Optimus where all the colors were flat, and combined that with a toon-shaded version of him, and that's how I got that final result!

The mission image is one of my favorite images in the What-If. I modeled Transformers versions of the pick-up barrels and a giant eye-like spotlight to stick behind Shockwave.

The wheel hubs are an interesting story because, despite how small they are, I spent more time working on them then any other element of the user interface graphics.

It was fun to think up different icons for the hub and each part of the hub represents a different part of the game. The gear represents the settings, the axe represents the store, the fist is for missions and the Autobot icon is for the heroes in the game.

In the actual SHSO game, they just flipped the hub icon they created horizontally instead of making a new one. A bit lazy, to be sure, but it made it easier on me because I only needed to model one. When it was all said and done, the hubs were 15% the size that they used to be. Oh well.


Well, that's it for my Behind-the-Scenes of the Transformers What-If!
I have two What-If Bonuses to complete before I go on a What-If break for a while.

I saw that White Phoenix was made available for a week but I didn't report on it, sorry if you were expecting a post. Anyway, if she truly has more powerful attacks then I'd pick her over normal Phoenix any day, since I like her costume more.

I hope you had a happy 4th of July!

-- SHSOFan.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

News to Me

Yes, that's an in-game loading screen, which means, thanks to SHSO's efforts, I'm finally able to get in the game! So everything that you've gotten used to is new to me! Just in case you missed something, I'll be reviewing every change I see.

Ooh, a summer mystery box! This is probably a better deal then any of the other boxes, at least you aren't getting anything TOO important. I really need to get one of those badges, though, just to see what it does. I'm crossing my fingers that they have a Gambit badge!

Hey, look, they also have a Titanium Man mission as well as a Mystery Box! Does this mean we'll get Thanos and Mysterio missions AND boxes?! Please make it be so! It does worry me that Mysterio isn't on the alternate loading screen above, but maybe they just couldn't fit him in.

Last and least we have Titles, which lets you add a title to your squad name. It's basically a money-grab, since I couldn't care less about having "The Weird Night Commander Guard" as my squad name.  Besides, it seems like an odd coincidence that all the cool names are only for Agents-Only members. I think it's fine to pass on this and save that 25 gold for fractals, (available in the Goodies section).

Speaking of fractals...

Fractals are finally in the game and I was able to get a measly 8 fractals before I got annoyed and bought one hundred of them from the store. It was kind of a waste of money, but who knows maybe I'll be the lucky random guy who gets the prize despite not really doing any work for it.

And here's the awesome new fractals screen, with the prize clearly displayed, (want want want want), and a leader board so you know what you're up against. It wouldn't take much to get on the board, you'd just need 10,000 silver, (got it), and six hours to get 200 more fractals. This seems like a huge waste of time to me, it's gonna take a while to collect all those fractals, and each hero can only collect ten anyway. Six heroes is only 60 fractals, and for 1,000 silver you can get a hundred fractals. It seems like the people who'll win are the people who buy the fractals in the store rather then the people who painstakingly collect them using their heroes. 

So, in short, get silver. Tons of it. If you have gold, purchase silver in the store with it. Then buy around ten thousand fractals, for which you'd need about 100,000 silver. Eeeeuuaaaghhhh. Like I said, not worth it. Chances are Spiderman Noir will be made available for a brief time in the store at the very least, hopefully permanent when the new reward hero shows up, (betting on Mysterio). After all, it wouldn't be the first time SHSO has put a so-called "exclusive" hero in the store. Remember Phylocke? Remember Armored Spiderman? Yeah.


Anyway, there's still more to talk about, can you believe it?!
My poll came in VERY close, with the Racing Game at 5 and the Megatron Mission at 6.
So I guess you'll be seeing ole bucket-head soon. Also, be on the lookout for my Behind the Scenes for the Transformers What-If!

-- SHSOFan.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

New Loading Screen and Sidekicks!

Looks like we have a new loading screen, with Titanium Man, Thanos, and Mysterio!
Does this mean they'll release a few new missions at long last? Most likely. Unless of course, they're only playable characters. However, I think it's safe to assume that we'll get a mix of villain releases and missions.

Unfortunately, this was as far as I got in the game, because something's wrong with the download and it didn't download all the way. If you've been having problems with the downloading screen, complain about it in the comments section below!

In other news, some new sidekicks were released, which is great news for those people who can afford it. I'm still waiting for REAL sidekicks, as in an A.I. character that'll help you during a mission. Wouldn't it be awesome to be playing as Iron Man and have War Machine fighting beside you, or Captain America and Bucky?!

Either that, or a system that'll set you up with a set of characters that belong together, like if you logged into a mission as Thing you would only play the mission with people who were playing as the other three members of the Fantastic Four. Or if you logged in as Avengers Iron Man you would only play with other Avengers. That'd be awesome.

Right now we have a tie in my What-If Bonus poll! Go help it out by voting!
If you want to know more about the choices, go my Transformers What-If post and scroll to the bottom.

-- SHSOFan.

Friday, June 14, 2013

What-If: The Transformers Come to SHSO!

The following post is a fictional exploration of what a Transformers SHSO would look like.

This week Hasbro and Gazillion Entertainment, (the makers of Super Hero Squad Online), released Transformers Squad Online, a new game set in the universe of Transformers!

When I set up my account and pressed the "Start" button on the home page, I was greeted by a loading screen with Optimus Prime from G1 and Optimus Prime from the movies, and their transformed modes.

I was walked through a tutorial where I purchased both Optimus Prime and G1 Optimus Prime. Unfortunately those were the only playable characters at the time, however they've promised to include a Decepticon version of the store where you can play as Decepticons and fight Autobots in missions.

Finally, I was able to play the game. I was sent to one of two Areas, Iacon.

Because I am a reviewer and this was a prototype version of the game, nobody else was around.
Now to explain the icons, starting at the top left corner and moving clockwise.

The "Tasks" button gives you a set series of tasks to complete within the game, which awards you with XP or special characters. The button with the Autobot logo lets you switch characters.

The "Pick a Robot" screen.
The button below it with the strange symbol, (it's the Minicon logo), lets you summon a Minicon.

Clicking the Minicon button...

...lets you summon a Minicon!

The Minicons add points to your squad level as well!

Anyway, moving on, the button with the speech bubbles gives you a pre-selected bunch of phrases like, "Transform and Roll Out!", "Decepticon Alert!", or "My name is [insert character name here]".

The button with a "T" on it activates your transformation!

They've promised a racing game in the future, where you race other Autobots and Decepticons in transformed mode!

The "Buy Shanix" button lets you buy Shanix via an online form. The button to the right of it lets you toggle fullscreen mode on and off. The right hub is called the Transport Hub. It transports you to different parts of the game, like the soon to be released racing game, to the store, to different Areas, the options menu, to the card battle game, your HQ, and missions. The left hub is called the Pack. It contains items you can use in the zones, like Modifications and Enhancements.

Now that I've covered all the buttons in the main gameplay mode, it's time to move on to the store!

The store has a wide variety of categories, with more to come, I'm sure. Right now there are only the two robots to buy, but like I said earlier, they'll be coming out with a Decepticon section soon.

They have four missions currently in the game, but on my first day I was only able to get one, Shockwave's mission. However, they have a Daily Mission available every day if you aren't an Elite Guard member.

The HQ section of the store has many interesting items, like Lockdown's hook or Prowl's ninja stars. They're cheap, but you have to become an Elite Guard member to use your HQ right now, so sadly, I didn't get to try out the items I bought.

They have an awesome-looking card pack available in the Card section, however I was unable to buy it and therefore couldn't play the card game either. Oh well, I'll save up enough shanix eventually.

You can also buy Badges to increase your robot's max level. I have yet to try them, but they sound awesome!

Now it's time to review a character, and I picked Movie Optimus just because I've played on him more, though the G1 version isn't bad at all.



Optimus Prime can only jump once, and he can't fly, (still waiting for the Jetfire Upgraded Optimus Prime!), but his truck mode rolls outs smoothly and is really fun to drive around the zones, what with the physics engine and tilting and slow stops and all that fun stuff.

I give his EXPLORATION a 7/10!


Optimus Prime fights really well. He has multiple missile attacks, he slices and dices with his flame-y sword, and his Roll Out move has him transforming and ramming through anything in his path.
The Shockwave mission I played was very good, with Predacon enemies and a great two part boss battle. As Optimus, it was really fun to fight Shockwave, and then Predaking, and then to get a Titanium Alloy medal for my efforts was really satisfying.

I give his FIGHTING a 7.5/10!


The detail on Optimus is extensive, and when looked at alongside a picture of the actual movie's, the parts are replicated almost exactly. While the level of detail doesn't quite fit with the rest of the game's characters, it sure is cool!

I give his COOL FACTOR a 9.5/10!

OVERALL: I score Optimus an 8/10. He's a "prime" example of how fun the game is currently.

Well, that's it so far, be sure to watch for updates about the racing game and card battles soon! :D


Well, that wraps up this What-If... for now. However, you can vote in the new poll in the sidebar on whether you want me to show...


There would be images of a card battle with various attack cards and a new Decepticon opponent!



An awesome Mario Kart style racing game... but SHSOfied with Transformers! I'd show pictures of a cool Cybertronian race track and different power up moves.



You may have missed the leader of the Decepticons in my What-If above. If you choose this I'll show pictures from a mission where you fight Megatron, but this time with G1 Optimus.



I could animate a short video of Optimus Prime running around the zones and transforming into a truck. Should be pretty cool.

Anyway, in case you haven't noticed, I'm a huge Transformers fan as well as a Marvel and DC fan, so it was really fun to blend the two worlds together. I made everything you saw in the pictures from scratch, so if you have any questions, comment below! I'll also make a Behind the Scenes post eventually. Next on my schedule will be that Playable Villains Bonus... I think I'll use DC villains instead of Marvel ones since the What-If sort of came true. :)

Keep checking in for that and more!
-- SHSOFan.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

The Watcher and World Events

So, on one hand I'm glad that they finally released the Watcher and Spiderman Noir. On the other hand, the contest that they're preposing isn't very fair.

Apparently, in order to get him, you need to use every hero you have. Each hero can collect 10 fractals from each of the zones per 12 hour time span. If you don't have too many heroes, then you've lost before you start. Now I know there aren't a lot of players with that many heroes, but don't you think it'd be fairer to set some kind of amount of fractals that you need to collect to get him? Say it was 5,000 fractals, and you didn't have to do it within 12 hours. Every day, you'd still be collecting fractals, you just wouldn't be pushed to collect them in such a short amount of time, and you could have a chance even if you didn't have that many heroes.

I guess you'll just have to hope you get to be the lucky randomly chosen player, because the only way anyone will win this is if they have a lot of time on their hands and a lot of heroes.

What do you guys think? In some ways, it's a good idea. It'll certainly get more people buying heroes. Now if only they'll put back the heroes they swiped from the store, and gave us the Mysterio mission. That'd be nice.

To tide you over until my new What-If's out, here's a teaser!

-- SHSOFan.